It’s day 4 of the #TMIblogtour!
Back in March we reported that Cassandra Clare’s UK publisher Walker Books would reissue the covers of The Mortal Instruments and to celebrate the publication of these stunning new editions of TMI, out in the UK today, we’ve teamed up with Walker Books for a blog tour to show the amazing artwork created for these covers!
Here’s the piece of art used for City of Fallen Angels, and the cover – click on the thumbnail and the finished cover to see the intricate detail of it! It looks absolutely amazing!
The artwork was created by Míla Fürstová, an award-winning internationally exhibited artist, who has shown in 20 solo shows in many countries, including Britain, USA, France and the Czech Republic over the last decade. During this time she has won 14 prestigious awards. Her work has become part of important private and public collections, including that of Queen Elizabeth II and the V&A Museum in London and has featured in numerous publications. She also designed the illustration for the CD cover of Coldplay’s Ghost Stories, a big reason why Walker Books commissioned her for these new covers. You can follow her on Twitter @MilaFurstova
Míla uses a print-making medium from the Middle Ages called etching:
– She uses a metal plate coated with wax
– She draws the illustration with a metal needle, exposing the bare metal
– The plate is then immersed in acid and the acid bites into the metal, where it’s exposed, resulting in lines on the plate
– The plate is inked all over, and the ink goes into the lines
– The plate is put through a high-pressure printing press together with a sheet of paper and the paper picks up the ink from the etched lines, making a print
Using this method, she made an intricate etching for each book, drawing on a metal plate. This was then used to produce the print featured above, which we then digitally coloured to use on the cover.
The choice of illustration for each cover was the result of a conversation between the Walker Books designer, Maria, and Míla. Everything had to be approved at sketch stage, because once the illustration is drawn onto the plate it’s very difficult to modify.
So for each piece of art, Maria sent Míla a full cover briefing of 5/6 pages per book with a synopsis, symbols, objects and extracts from the books with descriptions of characters, scenes and locations.
The briefing also suggested a few ways that Míla could go with the piece for the book.
Below is a snippet of the illustration briefing for City of Fallen Angels.
This book focuses a lot on Simon and his struggles at adapting to his new vampire life. He is also a Daylighter (a vampire who doesn’t get burned by the sun) and he has the mark of Cain to protect him from his enemies. Everybody wants Simon for some reason, as he is both a powerful weapon and a threatening enemy. Some vampires want to kill him and some want to have him as an ally. The demon Lilith wants to use him to resurrect Sebastian.
It would be nice to have Simon as the main character. He is now a vampire. He can stand the sun as well, but he is lost in a new world. He could be in one of the feathers arching his back and with the mark of Cain on his forehead radiating light. On the background we could have the Church of Talto and the transparent coffin where Sebastian is resting inside. On the other feather could be all his enemies: vampires, Camille, the demon Lilith… Or if that is too many figures we could have dark shadows or characters with hooded clothes. The main point is making it look like Simon is being threatened or suffering.
Míla first sent in sketches with her initial thoughts. Then there would be a bit of conversation about the sketch, before she produced the final etching on the metal plate to make the print with. Below is an example that shows the process.
Here is the etched metal plate for City of Fallen Angels (click the picture for a larger version).
Tomorrow, visit Shadowhunters World to see the artwork from City of Lost Souls!
We think that Mìla’s artwork for City of Fallen Angels looks phenomenal and the process of creation sounds incredibly interesting! Kudos, Mìla, and thank you for creating such a beautiful cover.
The new editions are available in the UK today!
These are UK English Language editions, but you can also order them online even if you do not live in the UK. We have included the links to the Book Depository’s pages and also the ISBN numbers you need if you want your local bookseller to order them in for you.
City of Bones (ISBN 9781406362169) / City of Ashes (ISBN 9781406362176) / City of Glass (ISBN 9781406362183) / City of Fallen Angels (ISBN 9781406362190) / City of Lost Souls (ISBN 9781406362206) / City of Heavenly Fire (ISBN 9781406362213)
Territories where you can buy the UK editions:
Singapore, India, South Africa, Germany, The Netherlands, Greece, United Arab Emirates, Slovakia, Lebanon, Pakistan, Switzerland, Malta, Austria, Spain, Sweden, Jordan, Denmark.
Thanks to the lovely people from Walker Books we are also hosting a giveaway for the complete set! Click on the angelic power rune above to get to the Rafflecopter page. The giveaway is for UK and Republic of Ireland residents only since Walker Books is an English publishing house.
Good luck! 🙂